How do Israelis feel about political violence today, 18 years after the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin? As Israel commemorates Rabin Memorial Day, consider the following findings of the 2013 Israeli Democracy Index.
Eighteen years have passed since the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin. Many people see that event, when murder was used for political ends, as the low point of Israeli democracy. It is therefore alarming to discover that today, almost a quarter of Israeli citizens are not averse to the use of political violence.
Following are key findings on political violence from the Israeli Democracy Index 2013 (pp. 101–104):
- A solid majority (73.4 %) of Israeli citizens (both Jews and Arabs) oppose the use of violence for political ends under any circumstances.
- Approximately a quarter of Israeli citizens (22.6%) in both sectors are not averse to the use of violence for political objectives.
- The rate of those who think it is acceptable to use violence for political goals is slightly higher among Arabs (26.5%) than among Jews (22.1%)
- In the Jewish sample, the rate of those who do not rule out the use of violence to achieve political goals is highest among the youngest age group (18–24).
- Over the years, there has been fluctuation in the number of those who do not agree with the statement that violence must never be used for political ends under any circumstances. (See figure below.)
For Further Information
For a detailed analysis of these findings and more, read the Israeli Democracy Index 2013 in English or Hebrew.